History

Unearthed A Tiny Treasure In An Ancient Tomb Tells About A Rare Love In The World

In 1954, archaeologists discovered a special tomb dating back to the Ming Dynasty on Mount Wufeng, in Jiangsu Province, China.

This is a conjugal grave where the remains of one man and four women were found.

This surprised experts, because the usual graves with spouses only have 2 people. This tomb contains one man but four women. Therefore, the identity of the owner of the tomb must not be trivial.

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After studying the inscriptions on the stele and the clues during the excavation, the archaeologists finally identified the owner of the tomb as Truong An Van, a doctor of the Ming Dynasty. Meanwhile, the remaining four women are the main chamber and the concubines of this doctor.

However, the method of burial in this Ming Dynasty tomb is very different from the traditional burial custom. According to the explanation of archaeologists, in feudal times, only the main chamber was buried with her husband. Meanwhile, the concubines were buried together.

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However, in this tomb, the concubines were buried with the main chamber. This is very rare. Perhaps because the wife and the concubines in this tomb lived together quite harmoniously.

During the excavation, experts said that the burial items of the owner of the tomb were not remarkable. But they were extremely excited when they discovered that there was a treasure placed on the head of a concubine. It was a hairpin with a golden cicada placed on a jade leaf.


Despite its small size, this treasure is exquisitely crafted. No one would have expected that such an exquisite golden cicada would be found in the burial ground of a concubine.

“Golden Zen Jade Diep” – a golden cicada and jade leaf found in an ancient Ming Dynasty tomb.

The cicada is made of gold so vivid, lifelike, even the patterns on the wings can be clearly seen. The jade leaf is made from Yangzhi white jade, a precious stone belonging to the top class in ancient times. The jade leaves are skillfully and delicately carved when the veins of the leaves can be clearly seen.

The perfect combination of two exquisite pieces surprises the experts. Because even in today’s advanced technology, very few people can make such delicate items. This shows that the crafting technique and aesthetic level of the ancients were very high.

Overall, the golden cicada on the jade leaf is a rare treasure. It is reported that this cicada weighs up to 80 grams and has a gold content of up to 90%. According to experts, its value is estimated at 900 million yuan (about 3,254 billion VND). Even in the past and present, this pair of “jewels of meditation jade” is still extremely valuable and highly appreciated by experts.


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Even according to experts, the value of this treasure is more difficult to estimate because it is not only expensive in terms of money but also has historical significance. In particular, the fact that it is still intact and alive in the ancient tomb after hundreds of years shows the master crafting technology of the Ming Dynasty artisans.

Why is the treasure placed on the head of the concubine?

In ancient times, cicadas were not only an ordinary animal but also carried extremely important meanings. There is an old saying: “Cicadas escape the body”. Literally, the cicada escapes exactly to indicate that the cicada will break the cover to get out. Besides, cicadas usually disappear in the fall and reappear the following summer. Therefore, since ancient times, cicadas have also symbolized the beginning and ending of the cycle.

Yellow cicadas are placed in ancient graves with the same desire as cicadas to be able to repeat the cycle. This also suggests that the owner of the grave may want the woman he loves to rest in peace and quickly reborn. With many profound implications, placing “Jade meditation jade” on the head of the concubine can show that the owner of the tomb is very interested, pampered and devoted a lot of love to this woman.


Moreover, after researching, experts discovered that Truong An Van’s family background is not high. In modern society, this doctor can be considered as middle class, not a powerful family at the time. However, just based on the location of the most valuable treasure in the tomb, it is possible to know that Truong An Van’s lifelong love is for this concubine.

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It is not an exaggeration to think that the golden cicada hairpin on the jade leaf can be a symbol of the tomb owner’s love for his concubine, different from the feudal thought. This is indeed an enviable “heaven and earth” love story, because concubines often have a very low status and are not as respected as the main house.

The yellow tick on the jade leaf is currently kept at the Nanjing Museum and has become a treasure here.


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